News from the Nance College of Business
In this edition we present the third part in our series on engagement with the business community. The past two issues focused on our partnerships with the business community, particularly the Nance Applied Business Scholar program. We also examined how members of our faculty challenge their students with real-world projects, providing practical business experiences before they graduate. In this issue we will discuss the importance of entrepreneurship and small business education in engaging our students with the business community.
Throughout his career, Dr. Jeffrey Susbauer has worked to engage students in his small business and entrepreneurship classes, assisting his students in gaining the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to start and grow a small business. His most notable success story is that of Monte Ahuja, for whom our building is named. Mr. Ahuja took Dr. Susbauer’s entrepreneurship course in 1975, and wrote the business plan for his future company, Transtar Industries. Dr. Susbauer introduced Mr. Ahuja to a banker (who was also a Nance alumnus), who provided him with his first loan. Today Transtar Industries is “the leading worldwide distributor of original equipment quality transmission parts to the motor vehicle repair industry.” Dr. Susbauer feels it is important for students to learn about small businesses because “The more students know about entrepreneurship, the more valuable they are as employees.”
Nance is also involved in helping to stimulate entrepreneurship and small business growth for our Northeast Ohio community. Colette Hart, Director of Business Centers and Outreach, and Executive in Residence Dr. Julian Earls are involved in the Scholarship of Entrepreneurial Engagement program (SEE) that is designed to develop the economic and entrepreneurial intellect of area high school students. Guided under the leadership of retired American Greetings executive and entrepreneur John M. Klipfell, the program is a collaborative initiative of Cleveland State University’s Nance College of Business and Economics America. CSU hosted the Second Annual Greater Cleveland Area High School Business Plan Competition where 17 high school students presented their small business plans as the culminating event in the SEE program.
Nance is also a member of the Entrepreneurship Education Consortium (EEC). The EEC is a collaboration of 7 area colleges and universities who’s objective is to teach students how to become successful entrepreneurs. Seven professors from the entrepreneurship programs of different universities, including Cleveland State University, University of Akron, Ashland University, Baldwin Wallace College, Kent State University, Case Western Reserve University, and John Carroll University, started the organization to go beyond the capacity of their individual institutions to help revitalize the regional economy through young entrepreneurs. This summer the EEC will host the second Entrepreneurial Immersion Week, which brings students from the seven universities together for a week of complete immersion in the skills needed to run a successful business. Instructor Jack Reece served as the first president of the EEC and continues to serve as Nance’s representative to the consortium.
CSU has embraced entrepreneurship education as a vital interdisciplinary area of study. We are working with the College of Science and the College of Engineering to create a certificate in science and entrepreneurship. This endeavor will bring science, engineering, and business majors together, giving them an opportunity to learn from each other as they learn to become successful entrepreneurs in the growing bioscience industry.
Dean Bette Bonder from the College of Science expressed the importance of the program. “Increasingly, graduates are going to work in small start-up companies. Scientists are innovators; however, they are not taught to think in traditional business terms. This program will allow our science majors to understand how business works, and the business majors will in turn benefit from discoveries in the hot areas of science and technology.” The certificate will be open to both undergraduate and graduate students. The program includes four courses; two from Nance, one from the College of Science, and one from the College of Engineering
The Nance College of Business focuses on entrepreneurship because small business development is essential to job creation and economic development. Small businesses currently employ almost half of all the workers in the United States. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, of all the firms in the country, 99.7% are represented by small businesses. In today’s economy we frequently hear stories about big companies that collapse, or are forced to lay off many of their workers in order to survive. Small businesses, on the other hand, created 60-80% of all new jobs for the past decade. Providing our students with the knowledge and skills to create small businesses will have a positive impact on their futures, on our business community, and on our region.
In this three part series we have looked at values that define the Nance College of Business—partnership programs, applied learning opportunities, and our commitment to the economic vitality of the Northeast Ohio region, as this is critical to the success of our college and our graduates.
Nance students Elizabeth Tsai, Martha Muhammed, Marvin Warner, and Celestine Ilori placed fourth as a team in the recent Key Bank Case Competition. The competition took place from February 29th through March 2nd, and was sponsored by The Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business, Office of Minority Student Services, and the Key Foundation. The competition involved sixteen teams from across the U.S, each consisting of four minority MBA students. They worked together to solve a business problem that Key Bank presented based on a current issue that the company is facing.
This year’s competition focused on the retail banking operations of Key Bank, and asked students to identify “strategies for growing its total account base, its geographic footprint, and its branch network equity.” The case went out on January 31st, giving students a month to prepare for the competition. Even before the case went out, the team from Nance began collecting background data on Key Bank. Dr. Elad Granot served as an advisor for the team. He said that the students “showed strong dedication, spending several hours developing a recommendation and plan of action for Key Bank.” “We needed to be very organized because we had to juggle classes, work, and devote a good deal of time to this competition,” said team member Elizabeth Tsai. As a result of all the time and effort they put in, the team was successful in the development of their recommendations for Key Bank.
The team from CSU examined a variety of data in order to develop their plan. “We pulled together demographic and market information, and then we considered solutions and alternatives,” Elizabeth said. Although the competition was involved, the students had been prepared for this kind of work when they took Dr. Granot’s marketing strategy class that focused on teaching through real-world scenarios. Elizabeth felt that the competition emphasized topics from the class, and said that Dr. Granot “offered great advice, insight, feedback and suggestions along the way.” The students’ had to learn to work together as a team, acknowledging each other’s strengths and weaknesses. “Everyone on our team was committed to putting forth our best effort,” Elizabeth said.
The students spent the weekend presenting their projects at the downtown Marriott Hotel. Sixteen schools presented on the morning of March 1st, and all but the final four were eliminated. The team from CSU outperformed several well known business schools, including those from the University of Chicago, Purdue University, and Case Western Reserve University. Nance student Martha Muhammed won the “Best Presenter Award” in the competition. Nance’s team finished fourth, following Indiana University, Carnegie Mellon, and the Ohio State University.
The recommendations from team CSU involved a “three-pronged strategy of mergers and acquisitions in the southwest, partnering with retailers for on-site banking centers in stores (such as Target and Whole Foods), and expanding on-line banking.” The students had to present their findings in front of top-level executives from Key Bank, answering questions and defending their findings. It gave them first hand experience in applying the techniques they had learned in class in a professional real-world setting. The students also had a chance to meet with the executives after the presentations.
Despite all of the hard work that went into the weekend of presentations, the students really enjoyed participating in the competition. It was an excellent opportunity for them to gain professional experience and expand their professional network. “We competed with fifteen other business schools from across the nation, and being selected to represent the Nance College of Business was quite an honor,” Elizabeth said. They are grateful for the help and support they received from Dr. Granot, Associate Dean Benoy Joseph, and Dean Scherer. As one of the final four teams, they received a trophy and a cash award of $1,000. The Nance College of Business is proud of our team’s accomplishments in this competition, and we look forward to carrying on the tradition of outstanding performance at the next Key Bank Case Competition.
The team of Laural Wagner, Omar Morales, and Alexis Lancaster recently competed for CSU at the Ohio Human Resource Games in Cincinnati. They won the competition over 7 opposing teams, including 2 others from Northeast Ohio. All three students are undergraduate seniors at the Nance College of Business. All three are also officers in the CSU chapter of the Society for Human Resource Management.
The CSU team lost only 1 of 5 matches in the opening round. They then went on to win the semi-finals and finals over schools from Northern Ohio. The next competition for the Ohio winner is the Regional HR Games on April 11 and 12, in Omaha, Nebraska.
The Ohio HR Games were held March 29th at Cincinnati State Technical College. The Ohio HR Games is an annual event among student chapters of the Society for Human Resource Management. In a Jeopardy-style format, teams answer questions related to human resource management and organizational development. Furthermore, the students’ professional development is aided through networking with other students and professionals. Teams from Ohio colleges and universities are invited to compete. The motto for the HR Games is “Compete. Learn. Succeed.”
The Nance College of Business fosters a variety of students at different points in their academic careers due to the diverse range of degree programs offered. Giovanna Carrillo is in her fifth year in the Doctoral Program at Nance. Originally from Bogota, Colombia, Giovanna came to Cleveland in 2001 to attend the MBA program at Nance where she focused on the area of finance. After completing her MBA, Giovanna enrolled in the DBA program because it seemed like an opportunity to further her career qualifications at an AACSB accredited institution.
Giovanna enjoyed the quality of her DBA classes, and found that they were “versatile to academia or the corporate world.” She said that “the DBA program is flexible, so you can attend classes part time while working, which helps with the transition from the corporate to the academic world, or vice versa.” Giovanna has had good experiences with professors at Nance. “I feel like I received quality instruction from teachers that really care about their students,” she said. In particular, she found that Dr. Bathala was always very helpful. “He was demanding in the quality of work that he expected from students, and this pushed students to produce their best work. He really cared about his students, and has helped to connect me with finance organizations and research opportunities.”
Giovanna has completed all of her DBA classes and comprehensive examinations, and is currently working on her dissertation that is about corporate governance. For the past two years, she has also been working full time at National City Bank on credit risk analysis. She said that she used the skills that she gained from the DBA program to get her job, which she really enjoys. Giovanna wants current students to know that the DBA program is not just reserved for those who wish to teach, but is also a beneficial qualification for career advancement in the business world. She also wants students to know that although the DBA program can seem daunting, it is an achievable goal. “The DBA program is for people who have the courage and the discipline to put forth the effort and time required; however, earning your DBA is an achievable goal that opens doors to better opportunities in your field.”
Giovanna plans on remaining in the Cleveland area once she earns her DBA. She feels a part of the community. “When I came over here in 2001 I felt very welcome by the city and the opportunities it offered. I have seen the positive changes the city is going through, and I enjoy living downtown in the middle of all this.” Giovanna was pictured in Kaleidoscope Magazine in September 2007 for being inducted into the Hispanic 40/40 Club, an organization that distinguishes forty Hispanic men and women under the age of forty for their contributions to their careers and communities. She is also a board member of the National Society of Hispanic MBAs Cleveland Chapter. Undoubtedly, Giovanna will continue to positively impact her field and the Cleveland community to an even greater extent once she finishes her DBA.
Alumnus Ernie Corvi is using his experience at Nance in a unique way.
Ernie graduated from CSU in May of 2007 with a BBA in Accounting. While
at CSU, Ernie also completed the pre-med curriculum. He plans on combining
his business degree with a career in medicine. Currently, Ernie is
at the University of Cincinnati completing his MBA. After he completes
his MBA, Ernie will attend medical school.
Ernie would ultimately like to work in hospital administration, or in private practice. He believes that in order to go far in the administration end of the medical field, an understanding of business practices is important. “Many health care practitioners do not have strong business acumen,” says Ernie. “Approaching health care from a business background will allow me to be more innovative in the field.”
In order to have degrees in both business and medicine, Ernie has had to be organized. It took Ernie five years to complete the pre-med core curriculum and his BBA in Accounting. He took 16 credit hours a semester, while maintaining a 3.95 GPA. In addition, Ernie started a winery with his father in 2003. Ernie worked full time as the general manager of the wine shop, “My Personal Winery” in Mentor, and attended evening classes. He said that the flexible class schedule at CSU enabled him to work full time while being a full time student.
Ernie enjoyed his experience at Nance, and thought that “all the professors had a lot of practical knowledge.” Particularly, he enjoyed taking tax classes with Dr. Yetmar, who he continues to communicate with, and Dr. Meeting, who retired from CSU. He also felt that classes at Nance made him equipped for his MBA courses at the University of Cincinnati. “Anyone who graduates with a degree from the Nance College of Business is very well prepared for graduate school,” said Ernie.
Originally from the Cleveland area, Ernie “absolutely loves Cleveland,” and sees himself coming back to the city in the future if it is good for his career. In the meantime, Ernie is busy completing his MBA, and applying to medical school. He has also been volunteering at a hospice in Cincinnati for the past six months. With such dedication and determination shown in everything he does, Ernie is proving to be an impressive well-rounded professional.
Colette Taddy Hart, Director of Outreach and Business Centers at Nance, was recently elected to the Board of Governors of NASBITE International (North American Small Business International Trade Educators). According to their web site, NASBITE International is a professional organization for the global business community whose mission is to advance the practice of global business. Its members include global business educators and trainers at academic institutions, trade specialists at federal, state, and local trade assistance organizations, and practitioners that engage in or facilitate global business activity.
The normal term for membership on the Board of Governors is three years. Colette was elected to the board based on her commitment to and involvement in international trade education, her leadership in international business development/training/technical assistance programs in Northeast Ohio, and her ability to serve as liaison for NASBITE International to other national associations, agencies, and private firms. Congratulations to Colette Taddy Hart.
Dr. Dieter Gramlich is a visiting professor from Berufsakademie Heidenheim in Germany, who will be working at Nance and the Federal Reserve Bank through May of 2008. Berufsakademie Heidenheim has had a partnership with the Nance College of Business for approximately 14 years. Dr. Gramlich determined that Nance would be the ideal place to spend his sabbatical because of the long-standing partnership between our two universities and because it was conducive to his own research interests. In addition to guest lecturing at CSU, Dr. Gramlich is spending half of his time conducting research for the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
Dr. Gramilch focuses his research on integrated risk management. At the Federal Reserve Bank he works on developments in financial crises, concentrating on a framework for assessing systemic risk. This means he examines how different areas of risk affect each other, and he looks at ways to avoid market risk from being unaware of risk interactions, or from over relying on simple risk correlations.
Dr. Gramlich plans to integrate his research at the Federal Reserve Bank into what he teaches students at CSU. He hopes to teach students about interrelated risk, and wants to give students insight on how financial risk management is carried out in Europe. In particular, he plans on instructing students of the similarities and differences of risk management from American and European perspectives. For example, Dr. Gramilch explains that “American and British courses are mainly driven by market values; however, German courses focus on an accounting and an income based approach.” He will focus on giving students information on European markets, products, and business techniques. While at CSU, Dr. Gramlich will serve as a guest instructor for Dr. Alan Reichert, Dr. Haigang Zhou, and Dr. Michael Bond.
During his stay in the U.S., Dr. Gramlich hopes to broaden his perspective on the management of American firms, and of business as a whole. Dr. Gramlich believes that business should be conceived in a larger framework that includes economic, social, and environmental issues.
In addition to conducting his own research, Dr. Gramlich is also spending time gathering useful information for his home university. German universities are in the process of converting to Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degree programs. Dr. Gramlich has been gathering information that will help his home university with this process.
Dr. Gramlich arrived in the middle of February, and will be staying until the end of May. He jokes that he “finds the weather great for conducting indoor research.” Dr. Gramlich appears to be enjoying his stay in Cleveland, including both his work at the Federal Reserve Bank and at CSU. He says that “the cold and icy weather has been compensated by the warm welcome that I’ve received at this university.” He says that Dean Scherer, Associate Deans Dr. Joseph, and Dr. Javalgi, along with the faculty and student body have made him feel completely welcome. In particular, he would like to thank Dr. Reichert for taking much time and effort to help organize his sabbatical here, and sharing his impressive financial research expertise. The Nance College of Business feels very fortunate be able to share in Dr. Gramlich’s expertise.
Nance College of Business is pleased to welcome Visiting
Scholar Dr. Manyu Huang from China, who began a one-year residency
with the Department of Marketing in early January 2008. Dr.
Huang is a lecturer in marketing and communication at the Zhongnan
University of Economics and Law, Wuban, Hubei Province, located in
central China, from which she earned a Ph.D. in economics in 2005.
Dr. William J. Lundstrom received a grant award of $74,895 from the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) to conduct a study, entitled “Assessment of MBA Attitudes toward the Business Community.” Dr. Lundstrom's study will examine students’ “beliefs regarding the business system and practices”. Traditionally, demographic measures have been the focus in examining characteristics of MBA students. Dr. Lundstrom’s approach is innovative because he will research the attitudinal beliefs that students have about the business community when they begin the MBA program. These findings will be consequential because “knowledge regarding their (students) attitudinal states, especially towards business, is particularly needed to understand values, beliefs and attitudes to counteract negative impressions and in curriculum development for ethics-related material”. The results of this study can be practically applied to the development of new and more contemporary course content. The study will be conducted in three stages. The pilot study will be conducted here at CSU. The second stage will be conducted at universities in Northeast Ohio, and the final stage will take place at regional institutions with top-ranked MBA programs. Dr. Lundstrom’s research begins this spring semester, and the study should conclude by late fall of 2009.
Dr. Thomas W. Whipple received a grant of $12,000 from the Provost’s summer Engaged Learning: CSU Undergraduate Research program to help cover undergraduate student expenses for the upcoming study abroad program to England that will take place from May 10th through May 24th. Dr. Whipple has been directing this program since 1985. During the course of the study abroad trip to England, Nance students will conduct research for Cleveland-based companies. Students will conduct research for Elster Perfection, Chilcote Company, Rusty’s Gourmet Pet Treats, and Donald Drumm Studios this year. Student groups will examine the potential marketability for their products in the U.K. market, analyze target customers and competition in the U.K., examine exporting concerns of products from the U.S. to the U.K., look at branding for products in the UK market, and provide the companies with a better understanding of the global market in general. Students write a research proposal and begin to conduct research during the spring semester. Once in London, they will conduct interviews and continue their secondary research using the library resources there. When they are back from the trip, student teams will write their final research reports. They will present their findings to the companies and participate in an Undergraduate Research Poster Presentation on September 4. There are four student teams; each one is led by an MBA student. The grant that Dr. Whipple received will be divided among the 10 undergraduate students, for an award of $1,200 per student. This amount will cover half of the expenses of the trip for each undergraduate student.
Dean Robert F. Scherer was recently selected as a Fulbright Senior Specialist. Dean Scherer’s selection as a Fulbright Senior Specialist Candidate means that he will be available to serve on special projects at an international institution, or matched with a program that requires his particular area of expertise. Once selected, Dean Scherer will be involved in project collaboration. Fulbright Senior Specialist Candidates remain on an active rooster for five years that makes them eligible to be selected twice, receiving a maximum of two grants. Fulbright Senior Specialist Grants are provided for by the host institution, and by the U.S. Department of State. Fulbright Fellowship programs seek to promote international collaboration and communication among universities. As a Fulbright Senior Specialist, Dean Scherer will be encouraged to develop a cooperative program with a host institution. Ultimately, Dean Scherer’s involvement in the program will help Nance to continue to develop partnerships with universities abroad. Dean Scherer previously served as a Fulbright Senior Scholar at the Universedad de Concepción, Chile and was a recipient of a Fulbright Alumni Legacy Grant.
Please welcome the new staff members to The Nance College of Business.
Aaron Melnick is the Administrative Secretary in the Department of Accounting. Prior to joining the Nance College of Business Aaron worked in New York for mortgage attorneys doing paralegal work. Aaron has a degree in Anthropology from CSU and plans to pursue a degree in science. Aaron lives in the Edgewater neighborhood.
Ronald J. Mickler, Jr. is a new Recruiter/Advisor in the Nance College of Business. Ron came to us from the College of Education where he also served as an academic advisor. He’s been employed at CSU since 1996. Ron has a Bachelor of Business Administration and a Master of Education from Cleveland State University. He lives in North Olmstead with his wife, Valerie, and their golden retriever, Murphy.
Jennifer Sekerak has also joined the staff in the Advising Office. Jennifer earned her Bachelor in Communication from CSU in December 2005 and a Master of Education in Adult Learning and Development in December 2006. As an undergraduate, Jennifer worked in the Department of Marketing. She later served as an academic advisor in the College of Business as a graduate assistant. Jennifer is pleased to return to the Nance College of Business as a full-time member of the staff.
Dr. Injazz Chen, along with his co-authors Dr. James
O. Flynn and Nance alumnus Dr. Anthony Paulraj have been awarded the
Journal of Purchasing and Supply Management Best Paper Award,
for their publication, “Levels
of strategic purchasing: Impact on supply integration and performance,” which
appeared in Vol. 12 (3), May 2006, of the journal.
The Department Management and Labor Relations organized and sponsored the CSU Business Concept Competition that was held in March 2008. The competition allowed students to showcase their various innovative business ideas by submitting business plans that were reviewed by a jury.
Several proposals were submitted by students with diverse backgrounds from a variety of universities. After careful consideration six semi-finalist teams were chosen. The semi-finalists presented their concepts in front of a jury, who awarded Nance students Erin Eurenius and Shadie Andraos as the winning team for their innovative idea of “La Dolce Vita.” Their winning concept of a unique dessert restaurant enabled them to win the CSU competition. They will also present their business idea at the Regional Competition being held at John Carroll University on April 7, 2008.
Tom LaMotte joined the Health Care Administration department at Nance in February 1999 after retiring from his position as CEO of Fairview Hospitals. He came to CSU as an Executive in Residence because he wanted to give back to the community, as well as remain active in his field. Using his previous career experience, he provides students with unique insight and opportunities in the area of healthcare administration.
Mr. LaMotte is involved in vocational counseling and career development for graduate students seeking an MBA in Health Care Administration. He organizes field trips and shadowing experiences for students to regional healthcare facilities. This gives students an inside look at what is involved in the daily operations of health care administrators. He also arranges internships for students, and helps them find jobs upon graduation. Mr. LaMotte says that he “enjoys the one on-one contact with the students and the opportunity to have a positive impact of somebody’s life.”
After practicing for nearly forty years in the field, Mr. LaMotte retains a variety of contacts that have benefited our students. As Mr. LaMotte puts it, he “knows what employers look for in future healthcare leaders.” Mr. LaMotte has found that over the past few years more students at CSU have become interested in the field of health care administration, which matches the growth of the field itself. With his experience in the field and his continued contact with leaders in the industry, he retains a “strong sense of the need for leadership development in Northeast Ohio.” His knowledge gives CSU students a better understanding of the skills they will need to succeed in the workplace, and the contemporary issues they will encounter in the field.
Mr. LaMotte enjoys the work he does with students at CSU, and has also found that “the healthcare community has been very receptive in helping to provide students with jobs and applied educational experiences.” He says that while approaching healthcare administration from a business background is helpful, it is not required. Mr. LaMotte originally became involved in healthcare when a friend told him he should become a doctor. After taking classes in medicine, he decided that it was the administration end of healthcare that he wanted to pursue. Today, he advises students from different majors who want to go into healthcare administration. In offering advice to current students, he says “you should go as far as you can in your education, and use your time spent in education to explore various career opportunities.” Students at CSU who are interested in the field of healthcare administration have found a valuable resource in Mr. LaMotte.
The Monte Ahuja Scholarship luncheon took place on February 25, 2008 in the building that bears his name. Monte Ahuja is the founder and CEO of Transtar Industries, the leading aftermarket transmission parts supplier to the automotive repair industry. He earned his MBA in 1975 from The Nance College of Business Administration. He later established several endowed scholarship funds in business administration & engineering. Scholarships are awarded annually to students based on merit and financial need. Mr. Ahuja addressed the group of scholarship recipients, sharing his business acumen and encouraging them to pursue their dreams. Students enjoyed the opportunity to learn from him and to personally thank him for their scholarships.
The Nance College of Business will soon begin publishing a new semi-annual publication for the business community featuring faculty research. We are having a contest to name the publication.
The purpose of the publication is to provide business professionals with knowledge that increases their capacity to impact their organizations’ success and to foster future collaborations between the business community and Nance faculty. This publication will provide business leaders with an authoritative perspective on current business issues and emerging trends, share insight on the latest thinking and best practices, and discuss the implications of changing practices, technologies, market trends, and regulatory issues.
Submit your suggestions for the name of the publication by sending an email to email@example.com with the subject “naming contest” no later than Friday, April 18, 2008. Be sure to include your full contact information when you send your submissions. The winner will receive a “goodie bag of gifts” from the Nance College of Business.
If you wish to receive Dialogue, Click here to subscribe.